Save Water, Energy, Money and the Environment

Volume 9, Number 1

January 2013

Calling Volunteers!
10 Tech Resolutions for 2013
13 Green Biz Predictions for 2013
Will 2013 be the Year of the LED?
L.A. Metro
6 Things Utilities Need to Get Right in 2013
Sanitation Districts
Utilities Can Benefit from Building Codes, Says ACEEE
West Basin
Got Energy Data?
City of Torrance
Top Corporate Sustainability Trends in 2013
Staff Spotlight
Green Building Watch
Legislation Corner
California Cuts GHGs for 3rd Year
Cities in the News
January / February 2012 Events & Workshops
A Worthy Read
Interesting Domestic and International Articles Discussing the Environment, Energy Efficiency and Water Conservation


There has never been a better time to help out and be recognized.

Email Martha, call her at 310.371.7222, x 209 or complete our volunteer application and submit it by email or mail.   
You can make a huge difference! 

 Visit Our Cities

El Segundo
Hermosa Beach
Lawndale Lomita
Manhattan Beach
Palos Verdes Estates
Rancho Palos Verdes
Redondo Beach
Rolling Hills
Rolling Hills Estates

SCE Customers in
San Pedro & Harbor City

County Unincorporated Areas in South Bay 



Southern California Gas Company  


Southern California Edison


West Basin Municipal Water District  


 En Espaņol


Southern California Gas Company
Southern California Edison Sanitation Districts of LA County

  County of Los Angeles 



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To read the South Bay Cities Council of Governments' latest edition of its newsletter,
South Bay Watch,
click here

Where Does Your City Rank in the 

SCE Energy Leader Partnership Program?


Platinum Tier
20% Energy Reduction Stay Tuned


Gold Tier
10% Energy Reduction 
City of Hawthorne
City of Lomita 


Silver Tier
5% Energy Reduction 
City of Carson
City of El Segundo
City of Hermosa Beach
City of Inglewood
City of Manhattan Beach
City of Rancho Palos Verdes
City of Redondo Beach
City of Torrance 
Valued Level
City of Lawndale
City of Palos Verdes Estates
 City of Rolling Hills
City of Rolling Hills Estates
City of Gardena

Did You Know?

"California has the most customer-side solar installations of any state in the nation. This is a tremendous milestone for California and a testament to the success of the California State Initiative."


- Michael Peevey, President of the California Public Utilities Commission 

The California Solar Initiative (CSI) announced at the end of last week the State of California has officially surpassed one gigawatt, (GW) or 1,000 megawatts (MW) of energy generation during the month of December. In all, they were able to install 1,066 MW by the end of 2012. Even though the panels don't produce as much energy when the sun isn't out, approximately one gigawatt of solar electricity can power over 200,000 households.

- The Energy Collective

Message From the Deputy Executive Director of Environmental Programs


The New Year beckons!  As 2012 is in the rear view mirror, what lies ahead on the road to Tomorrow?  Many of our personal resolutions are sincere but short lived, so where do we go from here?  How can we engender the passion and resolve to make a difference in a lasting and meaningful way?


January offers help in this regard.  Participating in the National Day of Service on Monday, January 21 is a good place to start.  Honor the life and legacy of Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. by doing something for others whether at home, at school, at work, or in the community. 


A second avenue is through the observance of January as National Mentoring Month. Here at South Bay Environmental Services Center, we are challenging ourselves to discover how we can serve as a mentor to the community through our efforts to save energy, conserve water, reduce waste and improve air quality.  Or, turning the idea around, what can the SBESC learn from those we serve, considering others as our mentors? In fact, some of our greatest inspiration comes from our volunteers, who contribute significant time and effort to serve the South Bay communities. With additional staff helping to manage our volunteer program, we are resolving to extend our reach to the South Bay this year by increasing the size and scope of our volunteer base. Give SBESC a call (310) 371-7222 to get involved!


Since "actions speak louder than words," I invite you to use the articles that follow as a personal GPS - a roadmap - to protecting natural resources on our way to a Sustainable South Bay in 2013.

Catherine Showalter


Energy Upgrade Logo
Energy Upgrade California
Increased Rebates for the New Year
Energy Upgrade CA in LA County is starting the year off on a high note by announcing an increase in the total rebate available when you make your home more energy efficient. Homeowners who achieve 45% energy savings, or more, are now eligible to receive up to $4,500 in rebates. What better way to start 2013 than by making your home more comfortable and energy efficient?

With increased maximum rebate potential for those homeowners who achieve 45% or more in energy savings, Energy Upgrade gives you one more reason to take the first step to increase your home's energy savings while also making your home more comfortable.

Click Here to determine your rebate eligibility at each energy savings milestone. 

Phony Telemarketing Calls 
Have you received a phone call from someone claiming to be from Energy Upgrade California? Are you wondering about the authenticity of any contact you've received related to the program?  It's easy to check to ensure the contractor is approved by Energy Upgrade California (EUC).   A list of approved EUC contractors in your region is available by entering your zip code in the "For Local Information" box on the first page of this website. We have learned that some entities are making automated telephone calls falsely identifying themselves with "Energy Upgrade California." 

Be sure to give SBESC a call with any questions regarding Energy Upgrade California or concerns about potentially phony contractors: (310) 371-7222. 


10 Tech Resolutions You Can Make for 2013
Sustainable Suggestions for the Techies this Year 

Mashable just posted about 8 Tech Resolutions staff members are attempting for the new year. The list includes things like digitizing your photos, setting your privacy filters on your social networks, and deleting apps you don't use. The last two items stood out: Go paperless, and go outside. These are tech resolutions that could have come straight from TreeHuggers. What else should be resolved to do in 2013 that will improve life, particularly for the environment? Here's a list of suggestions (some items of which may contradict each other but that's the joy of pick-n-choose lists):

Read More


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Southern California Gas CompanyThe Gas Company

Seminar Schedule: Commercial & Industrial Businesses/Sustainability


Curious about how your business can be more sustainable? Register today for 2013's first quarter of seminars with SoCal Gas to find out. 

Click Here


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13 green business predictions for 2013
What Does the Crystal Ball Have in Store for Green Businesses this Year?

It is that time of year again, the time of New Year's resolutions and predictions for the next 12 months. So, without further ado, here are the 13 predictions that BusinessGreen is making for 2013. They are in no particular order with no guarantees as to their accuracy, but these are the key developments expected for the coming year.

Find Out What They Are


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Southern California EdisonSCE  

Man Electrocuted While Trimming Tree


A man trimming a tree in the Lower Abalone Cove area of Rancho Palos Verdes was electrocuted, knocking out power to nearly 2,000 Southern California Edison customers.

Read More

View SCE's Safety Guide


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Will 2013 be the 'Year of the LED?'
Say Goodbye to Inefficient 75-watt Bulbs 

With prices for energy-efficient light-emitting diodes (LEDs) dropping, LED holiday lights lasting for years, and 32,000 LEDs glowing on the Times Square New Year's Eve Ball, 2013 could be the "Year of the LED," predicts the Alliance.


"We see LEDs grabbing more market share in 2013," said Alliance President Kateri Callahan. "Their retail prices are coming down, and more U.S. consumers are realizing that their lifespans of up to 25 years make them a good deal." 

Read More


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L.A. Metro


Put together a group of at least 5 people interested in forming a new vanpool to a worksite in Los Angeles County, and you may be eligible to receive a $400 monthly lease subsidy with the Metro Vanpool Program:

Learn more here


Enjoy the benefits of getting through traffic faster with a Metro ExpressLanes FasTrak transponder.


Receive 20% off the initial pre-paid toll deposit of $40.  AAA members will pay $32 for $40 worth of toll credits. 


The $3 Monthly Account Maintenance Fee will NOT go into effect until after the I-10 ExpressLanes open in early 2013.  The $3 Monthly Account Maintenance Fee is waived for Standard Account holders who make four or more one-way trips per month on the Metro ExpressLanes in any combination of transit, carpool, vanpool, or toll paying SOV.


AAA members can purchase their transponder here


Any questions regarding Metro's Vanpool or ExpressLanes programs? Give SBESC a call: (310) 371-7222


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6 Things Utilities Need to Get Right in 2013
What Can be Done to Better Educate the Public in 2013? 

The Smart Grid Consumer Collaborative has been pumping out research all year along about what the average person knows -- and doesn't know -- about the smart grid.


The findings repeatedly show that people don't really know much about it at all, but when given a little information, they generally like the idea of a more intelligent electrical grid.

Read More


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Sanitation Districts of LA County

Sanitation Districts of Los Angeles County

Sanitation Districts of Los Angeles County 

Water Reuse Program


The Sanitation Districts of Los Angeles County (Sanitation Districts) own and operate one of the largest wastewater recycling programs in the world. They have a long history of providing affordable, high-quality recycled water to public and private water suppliers to help meet the water supply needs for more than five million people within the Sanitation Districts' member service areas. Their 10 water reclamation facilities produce treated and disinfected recycled water, most of which essentially meets drinking water standards. The recycled water is used at more than 650 sites for a variety of purposes, including indirect, potable groundwater supply augmentation at the award-winning Montebello Forebay Groundwater Recharge Project. Each day the Sanitation Districts deliver clean, recycled water as an important local resource to residents and businesses. This resource is a safe, affordable, and reliable supply of water for industrial, commercial, and recreational applications; groundwater replenishment; agriculture; and the irrigation of parks, schools, golf courses, roadways, and nurseries. 

Read More


City of Hermosa Beach Household Hazardous Waste (HHW) / E-Waste Collection


Have no idea how to safely dispose of old electronics or toxic chemicals, old paints and other hazardous waste? Make the journey to Clark Stadium off of Valley Dr between 8th and 11th Streets in Hermosa Beach and drop off any household hazardous and/or electriconic waste on Saturday, January 26 between 9am and 3pm. 

Find out what you CAN and CANNOT drop off here


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Utilities Can Benefit from Building Codes, Says ACEEE
A New Report from ACEEE Finds Utilities Can Leverage Building Codes to Propel Their Energy-Efficiency Programs
There are new approaches to quantify the savings from code compliance efforts, according to "Building Energy Code Advancement through Utility Support and Engagement," a report by the American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy (ACEEE).

Read More


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West Basin Municipal Water DWest Basinistrict 
2013 'Water is Life' Student Art Contest 


Attention to artistic 3rd-12th graders across the South Bay! West Basin is hosting its annual "Water is Life" Student Art Contest with submissions due no later than 5pm on March 15, 2013. Winning entries are eligible for a free MacBook Pro laptop or $100 gift card to Michael's Arts and Crafts stores. 


Entry Form


The Green Button Initiative One Year Later: Got Energy Data?
36 Million U.S. Households Have a Smart Meter Installed 

Chances are, if you're in one of about 36 million U.S. households with a smart meter installed, you don't necessarily know what information is being collected or how to use it. In an effort to make home energy usage data more transparent for customers, utilities and other key electric industry players launched the Green Button Initiative one year ago this month. But how many people are actually looking at this newly available data?

Read More


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City of Torrance 
City of Torrance

Torrance USD Employee Health/Wellness/Benefit Fair -  Monday, January 28, 1pm - 5pm at Torrance High School 


If you are a Torrance Unified School District employee, be sure to stop by the South Bay Environmental Services Center exhibit table for the latest information on ways to save water, energy, money and the environment. 
Top Corporate Sustainability Trends in 2013
Sustainable Business for the New Year

In years past, companies would provide recycling receptacles and install compact fluorescent light bulbs (CFLs) and consider themselves "green." But with pressing forces of climate change, strained resources and transparency, corporate sustainability has evolved and become embedded deeper in business decisions. It now defines company culture and corporate reputation.

Read More


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Staff Spotlight 
Astrid Ollerenshaw  


Having lived prior in Oregon and Minnesota, SBESC's new Environmental Services Analyst (Program Support), Astrid just recently moved to the LA area. She's worked and volunteered at a multitude of public and private organizations and served as a board member with a community collaborative project helping immigrants and refugees. Her experiences have cultivated her commitment to give back to the community in order to support diversity and development.  


Astrid is originally from Colombia and has a Bachelor of Science in Psychology from the University of San Buenaventura, a Bachelor of Art in Human Resources equivalence given by the Foundation for International Service and a Master's Degree in Business Administration from Marylhurst University. She loves art, painting in watercolor and oil in her spare time. Happily married to an Oregonian, she has two successful steps sons, who live in Atlanta and Pasadena, and a daughter that recently graduated with a degree in International Relations in Washington DC. 

Green Building Watch
10 Things to Keep Your Eyes Open for This Year 

Green building will continue its rapid expansion globally in 2013 in spite of ongoing economic difficulties. More people are building green each year, and there is nothing on the horizon that will stop this MegaTrend or its constituent elements. However, the continuing slowdown in commercial real estate and the lower level of government project development will continue to put a crimp in new green building projects. In putting together a Top Ten trends for 2013, this list is taking advantage of conversations with green building industry leaders in the U.S., Europe, Asia, the Middle East and Australia during the past year.

Read More


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Legislation Corner 

Lame Duck Session not Lame for Energy Efficiency
For the second time in a contentious lame duck session of the 112th Congress, energy efficiency proved to be the 'bipartisan sweet spot' on energy legislation. In the final days of 2012, Congress approved energy efficiency advancements and, in a down-to-the-wire session on the first day of the New Year, voted to extend energy efficiency tax relief through 2013 for American homeowners, workers who commute via transit, businesses, and manufacturers.
Read More

President Obama's Clean Energy Progress: How the Top 10 Energy Priorities Fared During His First Term

In December 2008, during President-elect Obama's transition, the Center for American Progress proposed the "Top 10 Energy and Environment Priorities for the Obama Administration and 111th Congress." This progressive agenda was designed to protect public health from carbon and mercury air pollution, reduce oil consumption, and simultaneously boost the economic recovery. Four years later the administration accomplished nearly all of these goals despite the worst economy in nearly 80 years and strong opposition from Big Oil, coal, and other energy interests. Unfortunately, the priorities that required congressional action did not occur, though some progress was still made in each of these areas.
California Cuts GHGs for Third Year
Cleaner Air in California's Pursuit to be a Greener State
California's greenhouse gas emissions dropped for the third straight year with power plants, cement facilities, oil refineries, general combustion sources and other facilities emitting 111 million tons of CO2e in 2011, according to numbers released by the California Air Resources Board.

Read More


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Cities in the News 
Hawthorne Students Vie for TreePeople Trip to Angeles National Forest


Students at Hawthorne High and Hawthorne Middle School are among others throughout Los Angeles County vying in a social media contest for an all-expenses- paid trip to the Angeles National Forest to help restore a swath of territory devastated by the deadly Station Fire of 2009.

Read More


Citizens Group Opposes Measure A, Seeks 'Middle Ground' on Power Plant


A Redondo Beach citizens group has emerged to oppose Measure A, the initiative on the March 5 ballot that seeks to rid the city of the AES power plant on Harbor Drive.


Organizers of Redondo Beach United for a NO Vote on Measure A say the initiative puts the city at risk for a long legal battle and offers no guarantee that the existing power plant, which the city has labeled as blight, would be removed.

Read More



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January / February 2013 Events & Workshops 
Click Here 
to See a List of Upcoming Workshops & 
Click Here to See a List of Upcoming Events
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